TODAY IN HISTORY

Today is the 192nd day of 2019. There are 173 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On July 11, 1972, the World Chess Championship opened as grandmasters Bobby Fischer of the United States and defending champion Boris Spassky of the Soviet Union began play in Reykjavik, Iceland. (Fischer won after 21 games.)

On this date:

In 1798, the U.S. Marine Corps was formally re-established by a congressional act that also created the U.S. Marine Band.

In 1804, Vice President Aaron Burr mortally wounded former Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton during a pistol duel in Weehawken, N.J. (Hamilton died the next day.)

In 1859, Big Ben, the great bell inside the famous London clock tower, chimed for the first time.

In 1914, Babe Ruth made his Major League baseball debut, pitching the Boston Red Sox to a 4-3 victory over Cleveland.

In 1937, American composer and pianist George Gershwin died at a Los Angeles hospital of a brain tumor; he was 38.

In 1955, the U.S. Air Force Academy swore in its first class of cadets at its temporary quarters at Lowry Air Force Base in Colorado.

In 1960, the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee was first published by J.B. Lippincott and Co.

In 1979, the abandoned U.S. space station Skylab made a spectacular return to Earth, burning up in the atmosphere and showering debris over the Indian Ocean and Australia.

In 1995, the U.N.-designated “safe haven” of Srebrenica) in Bosnia-Herzegovina fell to Bosnian Serb forces, who then carried out the killings of more than 8,000 Muslim men and boys. The United States normalized relations with Vietnam.

In 2017, emails released by Donald Trump Jr. revealed that he’d been told before meeting with a Russian attorney during the presidential campaign that the Russian government had information that could “incriminate” Hillary Clinton. MSNBC “Morning Joe” host and former Republican congressman Joe Scarborough announced that he was leaving the Republican party, partly because of its loyalty to President Donald Trump.

Ten years ago: During a visit to sub-Saharan Africa, President Barack Obama addressed Ghana’s Parliament, where he challenged the continent of his ancestors to shed corruption and conflict in favor of peace. Funeral services were held in Hattiesburg, Miss., for former NFL star Steve McNair, who had been shot to death in Nashville a week earlier by Sahel Kazemi, who then took her own life.

Five years ago: Tommy Ramone, 65, a co-founder of the seminal punk band the Ramones and the last surviving member of the original group, died in New York.

One year ago: At a NATO summit in Brussels, President Donald Trump declared that a gas pipeline venture had left Germany’s government “captive to Russia,” and questioned the necessity of the NATO alliance. Porn star Stormy Daniels was arrested at an Ohio strip club, accused of touching and being touched by patrons in violation of state law; prosecutors dropped the charges hours later, saying the law was improperly applied.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Susan Seaforth Hayes is 76. Singer Jeff Hanna (Nitty Gritty Dirt Band) is 72. Ventriloquist-actor Jay Johnson is 70. Actor Bruce McGill is 69. Singer Bonnie Pointer is 69. Actor Stephen Lang is 67. Actress Mindy Sterling is 66. Former boxer Leon Spinks is 66. Actress Sela Ward is 63. Singer Peter Murphy is 62. Actor Mark Lester is 61. Jazz musician Kirk Whalum is 61. Singer Suzanne Vega is 60. Rock guitarist Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi) is 60. Actress Lisa Rinna is 56. Rock musician Scott Shriner (Weezer) is 54. Actor Greg Grunberg is 53. Actor Justin Chambers is 49. Actress Leisha Hailey is 48. Actor Michael Rosenbaum is 47. Pop-rock singer Andrew Bird is 46. Country singer Scotty Emerick is 46. RActor Jon Wellner is 44. Rock singer Ben Gibbard is 43. Pop-jazz singer-musician Peter Cincotti is 36. Actress Serinda Swan is 35.

Thought for Today: “Life is a lot like jazz — it’s best when you improvise.” — George Gershwin (1898-1937).

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